VW Official Says "Think Blue" Chattanooga Factory Is World Model

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Volkswagen's Think Blue Factory in Chattanooga will serve as the blueprint for all new plants worldwide and has become a benchmark for environmental efficiency for all existing plants,  Dr. Jan Spies, Volkswagen AG head of factory planning, said at the Center for Automotive Research's Management Briefing Seminar in Traverse City, Mich.

, on Wednesday.

Dr. Spies said Volkswagen is aiming to reduce its energy consumption by 25 percent and increase the renewable energy it uses by 2018 as part of the global Volkswagen Think Blue program. This applies especially to energy consumption, waste volumes, solvent emissions, water consumption and carbon dioxide emissions, he said. As Volkswagen AG builds new plants -- currently seven in China and an Audi plant in Mexico -- designers are using the Chattanooga plant as a sample, he stated.

Highlighting examples, Dr. Spies discussed the paint shop, which has one less spray booth and dryer than has been customary in traditional paint shops and doesn't need to use a primer coat of paint. This process alone reduces energy consumption by more than 20 percent. Volkswagen Chattanooga was the first plant to implement this energy-efficient paint process, and the method is being copied in Volkswagen plants around the world. Other energy efficient highlights of the plan include: The capturing of rainwater to cool equipment and flush toilets, six-inch insulation, and a newly added field of 33,600 solar panels that supply about 12 percent of the factory's power.

The Volkswagen plant in Chattanooga was the first automobile factory worldwide to receive platinum LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification by the US Green Building Council. Platinum certification confirms compliance with the most demanding standards for sustainable, environmentally compatible production.

"Through the growing efficiency and productivity of our plants, the Volkswagen brand is already making key contributions to the achievements of Group strategic targets for 2018," Dr. Spies said. "Sustainable, efficient production is a clear, competitive advantage. With its Think Blue. Factory. initiative, the Volkswagen brand is pursuing a clear strategy which pools all environmental activities at our plants throughout the world. Our ambitious targets for sustainable vehicle production have now been defined in a way which is clear and comprehensible for our customers."


David Snider To Lead Tech 2020 Wind Down Process

David Snider, former vice president of operations and chief financial officer of Technology 2020, has returned to the organization as president to lead the wind down of operations. He succeeds Kevin Kragenbrink who resigned effective Jan. 31 after the non-profit's Board of Directors voted unanimously to begin an orderly wind down after more than two decades in business.  ... (click for more)

Chattanooga Chamber Presents Business Calendar For Feb. 6-13

MON/2.8- Ribbon Cutting for Sonic Drive-In 12:00 p.m. Sonic Drive-In: 3508 Dayton Blvd Join the Chattanooga Chamber for a ribbon cutting at Sonic Drive-In TUES/2.9- Hixson Community Coffee 8:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. Hixson Youth and Family Development Center: 5400 School Drive Join the Hixson Council for their monthly coffee at: Hixson Youth and Family ... (click for more)

Cleveland School Board Votes 5-2 To Terminate School Director Ringstaff Over Twitter Messages

The Cleveland School Board on Friday fired Dr. Martin Ringstaff, director of schools, for sending sexually explicit messages to an anonymous woman a year ago.  His termination is effective immediately and does not include severance pay.  The school board called an emergency meeting after Dr. Ringstaff, who is married, admitted to sending explicit messages to ... (click for more)

History Center Not Giving Out Any More Information On Past Spending Details, Current Status, At This Time

The president of the Chattanooga History Center, which has halted plans for a world class history museum near the Aquarium after raising over $10 million, said no other information will be provided at this time. Chattanoogan.com had sought details about prior spending and the salary of former executive director Daryl Black as well as the center's current status. Jo Coke said, ... (click for more)

A Missing Link In Chattanooga's Crime Prevention Program

I would like to begin by introducing myself. I grew up in Chattanooga and I love this city. As a child, the space program and lunar landings were in full swing. I dreamed of a progressive city. I grew up reading books about space, travel, and superheroes at the Bicentennial Library.  I am the only son of a local pastor and businessman. When I graduated from East Ridge High ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The School’s Search Begins

Jonathan Welch, the chairman of the Hamilton County School Board, had no idea he would be giving himself a well-deserved treat some months ago when he promised his son they would go on a mission trip together. This week has to be the first time his phone hasn’t blinked overload since a December tragedy triggered a tsunami and repeated shock waves that crashed the Hamilton County ... (click for more)